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UN bringing child rights into the digital age

By Larry Magid In 1989 the United Nations passed an important human rights treaty. The Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) was ratified by all countries in the world except Somalia, Southern Sudan and — believe it or not — the United States.* Rights and protections And even though this document was written before kids started […]

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IGF attendees complain about censorship in Turkey while some advocate it for youth

(Istanbul, Turkey)  Censorship is very much on the minds of attendees at this year’s Internet Governance Forum in Istanbul. One reason, of course, is because the meeting is being held in a country that has censored the Web. Earlier this year the Turkish government blocked Twitter and YouTube for awhile and continues to block thousands […]

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Virginia teen sexting case: (Somewhat) reduced injustice

It was a picture-perfect example of how a law intended to protect children can be used to victimize them. But the juvenile judge didn’t comment on the perversion of justice – or the prosecution’s victimization of a teenager by ordering police to photograph the boy’s genitals and threatening even more abusive treatment. He just eased […]

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A task force report & a student bill of rights

One of the most remarkable things about the report of the Aspen Task Force on Learning & the Internet, I believe, is how in sync it is with students’ own view of what needs to happen in US education. Clearly, if a constitutional convention on students’ rights were held today, the various parties – students, […]

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Toward student-centered learning: Delete fear, add agency

“School,” said University of Maryland student and game designer Erik Martin in a TEDx talk last fall, “operates counter to the interests of children. In school, we’re not really taught to overcome a challenge; we’re taught to fear the prospect of failure…. How on earth can you innovate in a system that fears failure so […]

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IGF 2013 Workshop: Child Protection vs. Child Rights

Child Protection vs. Child Rights (#202) 4:30 PM (16:30) on Thursday, October 24th. Description This workshop, organized by ConnectSafely.org co-director Larry Magid, will explore potential conflict between child protection and youth rights, as outlined in article 13 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: “The child shall have the right to freedom […]

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Facebook lets teens post publicly: Why that’s a good thing

Facebook announced today that it’s changing its policy to allow teens to post publicly. Prior to today, Facebook members aged 13 through 17 were only allowed to post to a limited audience that maxed out with friends of friends. In a blog post, Facebook said that teens will also “be able to turn on Follow so […]

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